Road Season Preview 2004
February 10, 2004
Lotto - Domo
Lotto-Domo team presentation
The Lotto-Domo squad was presented on Tuesday in Oudenaarde, Belgium. The
23 man squad managed by Christophe Sercu is remarkable in that it only has one
new rider this year: Pole Piotr Wadecki, who rode for Quick.Step last year.
The remainder of the team is identical to the 2003 line up.
Peter Van Petegem remains the absolute team captain for the classics and one
day races. Winner of the two biggest classics in 2003 (Ronde Van Vlaanderen
and Paris-Roubaix), Van Petegem is aiming for another solid performance this
year. Asked by Belgian TV1 if the thought of having to do as well as last season
is something that keeps him awake at night, Van Petegem, relaxed as always,
smiled, "I don't lie awake thinking about races. I'm not nervous at all. The
only time I wake during the night is when my son Axandre wakes, otherwise I
have peace of mind."
Team management says it will be more than happy if Van Petegem can repeat
last year's success. On the other hand, Australian sprinter Robbie McEwen is
expected to gather more results this season. After an incredible 2002, McEwen's
results in 2003 were slightly below par.
"McEwen expects a lot more of himself too," he with his habitual confidence.
"I want to win more, a lot more, as well in the classics as in the Giro, the
Tour and the Olympics."
McEwen may have to wait before the results come, as he is suffering from tendonitis
after his crash in Qatar and won't be starting in the Ruta del Sol.
One of the team's other main riders, Axel Merckx, says that he wants to have
a better season than 2003 and has his sights set on the Olympic Games in Athens.
"I'm relieved. In 2003 I was suffering from a virus. Now I can find my best
legs again. I'm aiming at the Ardennes classics, but above all at the Games.
I am a circuit racer and the Athens parcours suits me," said Merckx.
Finally, Rik Verbrugghe, who has had a slow start to the season due to a knew
injury, wants to put the dark days behind him. His main goal is the prologue
of the Tour de France in Liege. "I've ridden the parcours many times," said
Verbrugghe. "But I have to find the form of 2001 and 2002 again."
Click here for the Lotto-Domo